Coping With Pain & Trying To Raise A Family

May 07, 2020

The fact is that living with pain - whether it’s as a result of an accident or illness or is chronic and long-term - can be totally and completely debilitating. It can have a hugely significant impact on both your physical health and your mental health and wellbeing. Pain can destroy your life. 

The funny thing about pain is that it is a subjective experience; it is unique to each person who suffers with it. Because pain is such a uniquely personal experience, living with pain - whether for a short period of time while an injury heals or in the long-term due to a chronic condition - can be utterly debilitating. It can also be extremely lonely and isolating, and can make raising a family far harder. 

Although raising a family can seem almost impossible when you’re dealing with pain, it is important to realise that life doesn’t have to be a struggle. There are strategies that you can put in place to help to make living with pain and raising a family easier to cope with. The most important thing is to remember that you’re not alone - a lot of parents are living with pain and there is support out there. 

Photo credit: Pixabay

While it may not be easy coping with pain and raising a family, there are a number of steps that you can take to help to make life that little bit easier for yourself. 

Manage your pain effectively 

The most important thing that you can do to make life easier for yourself is to learn how to manage your pain in an effective way. If you’re on painkillers, make sure to keep up with your doses, because if you forget to take a dose that’s when you will end up in a lot of pain - potentially unmanageable pain. That is why it’s so important that you make sure to keep up with any medication that you have been given, to ensure that your pain never becomes unmanageable. 

You see, when your pain gets bad, that’s when parenting can become a serious struggle. Don’t blame yourself if you find parenting when you’re in pain difficult - it’s completely normal to struggle to focus on anything but the pain you’re in. That’s why it’s a good idea to make sure that you always have a pain management strategy in place, so that when a bad bout of pain hits you are able to cope and still parent your children effectively. This is particularly important if you’re on your own a lot with your little ones. 

Seek professional help 

If you’re struggling to manage constant pain and raising a family, then it’s important that you take the time to seek professional help. There’s no point living with pain and not taking steps to try and combat that pain. If you’re struggling to manage your daily life and manage your pain, then it’s important that you take the time to seek some professional help from a specialist in the type of pain that you’re experiencing. 

For instance, say you’re struggling with foot and leg pain, then seeking some custom orthotics from specialist pedorthists could help you to better manage that pain. Or, if you’re suffering from back or neck pain, you may find that seeing a chiropractor could help. Whether it’s a new problem caused by an accident or injury or a long-term pain problem, there are places that you can turn for help. Say, for instance, you’re living with fibromyalgia which causes constant pain, you may find that acupuncture helps. 

Source adequate support 

There’s no shame in asking for help if you are struggling. As a parent, you may be hesitant to ask for help for fear of people thinking that you cannot cope. However, it’s far better to ask for help sooner rather than later if you are finding things a little tricky right now. If your pain is making parenting - or certain tasks - difficult, then getting a helping hand from a family member, such as a grandparent or aunt or uncle, or from a friend, could help to make life a little easier for you. 

Alternatively, if you don’t have anyone who you can turn to for support, there are also a number of charities that can offer support if you’re struggling. While you may not like the idea of accepting help from a stranger, if you really need support - even if it’s just in the short-term - it’s worth looking into the options available to you. If getting some extra help will make family life more enjoyable, then surely it’s worth it? 

Be creative 

Spending quality time as a family can sometimes be a struggle when you are suffering from pain. You may feel extremely tired or you may not want to move too much in case it makes the pain worse. The good news is that even if you are living with pain, that doesn’t have to mean that you can’t spend lots of quality time with your children, it’s just a case of getting creative about the approach you take, that’s all. 

Find fun ways to spend time together at home as a family. Perhaps you could create two ideas jars of things to do as a family - one jar could have ideas for when you feel like going out and the other jar could have ideas for when you feel like staying at home? You could sit down as a family and spend an afternoon coming up with lots of fun ideas, writing them down on pieces of paper and adding them to the jars. Fun at home activities include things like having a family movie day, building a fort in the living room, camping in the back garden, making homemade pizza, playing board games together, and doing arts and crafts. 

Living with pain and raising a family at the same time is no easy task, however the tips above should help to make coping a little easier and less stressful. Don’t be afraid to ask to help - every so often we all need a helping hand, and that’s fine. 

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